Nigel Worthington

The Managers: Nigel Worthington, 2007

In this edition of John Hutchinson's 'The Managers' feature, Leicester City's Club Historian remembers Nigel Worthington's short time on Filbert Way.
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Between April and October 2007, a turbulent period in the Club’s history, Leicester City had three managers in six months. The first man in this trio was Worthington.

On April 9, 2007, Leicester City were defeated 3-0 at Plymouth Argyle. This was the eighth game in a winless sequence of 10 matches during which only four points were gained.

City slipped to 19th in the Championship, putting them in very real danger of relegation to League 1 for the first time in the Club’s history.

Two days later, chairman Milan Mandarić announced that Rob Kelly would be replaced by the former Norwich City manager Worthington for the final five games of the 2016/17 season.

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Nils-Eric Johansson
Nils-Eric Johansson

Victories at Preston and Barnsley were enough to confirm City's second tier status.

Worthington came with a good track record, both as a player and as a manager. A Northern Ireland international defender and midfielder with 66 caps, he played in the 1986 FIFA World Cup finals in Mexico.

He also played top flight football for Notts County, Sheffield Wednesday and Leeds United before moving to Stoke City and Blackpool, amassing a career total of nearly 600 games.

His first management post was a two-and-a-half season stint at Blackpool. He then managed Norwich for six years, leading them into the Premier League in 2004.

Worthington’s first two games as Leicester City’s manager, meanwhile, were at home to Norwich City and Birmingham City, but the Foxes lost both.

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Nigel Worthington
Nigel Worthington

Worthington's most recent managerial post was at York City.

He then won the next two games, though, which were away fixtures against Preston North End and Barnsley. To ensure that there was a vociferous away support, Mandarić laid on free transport for the travelling fans.

Results elsewhere meant that safety was guaranteed in time for the last game of the season. Southend United, Luton Town and Leeds United (who were deducted 10 points for going into administration) were ultimately relegated.

In front of a capacity crowd on Filbert Way, Leicester were defeated 4-1 by Wolverhampton Wanderers and Mandarić decided not to extend Worthington’s contract, opting instead to appoint the MK Dons manager Martin Allen.

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